High Notes

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It's a long way to the top, if you wanna (good looking note)

I recently read a PMG article titled "Collection Inspiration: Women Writers". In the article a Ukrainian note is referenced, the 200 Hryven banknote, featuring Lesya Ukrainka on the front of the note. In the article a brief description was given about the Poetess and the note, PMG chose to highlight the 2nd series note (good choice) and I thought I would take the opportunity to expand on the evolution of the note itself.  After Ukraine declared independence from the USSR in 1991 the two cou

Fenntucky Mike

Fenntucky Mike in High Notes

I'm a sucker for (Fake Banknotes).

I did it again, actually twice more but I'll just focus on one for now. My love for companion pieces to my Ukrainian banknote collection knows no end. I recently picked up a few more fake or "fantasy" notes, they are in the same vein as my previous acquisition of a commemorative Antarctic set of notes, see my Journal entry "You need more, more, more (Stuff)" for details on those. As with the Antarctic notes these were printed on behalf of the Ukrainian numismatic magazine Numismatics & Faler

Fenntucky Mike

Fenntucky Mike in High Notes

You say I'm just a specimen! (Yeah, pretty much)

So how rare is a specimen? Well, if you collect Ukrainian banknotes not very. I've been looking at Ukrainian specimen notes for a while now, over a year, and one of the initial observations was that "wow, there are a lot available". Meaning that they are not hard to find and they are not hard to find a reasonable prices. For the modern issues anyway, 1991 to date. A quick search of ebay, lazily typing in UKRAINE SPECIMEN, nets 281 hits, of which I would say 50-75 are actual banknote specimens, s

Fenntucky Mike

Fenntucky Mike in High Notes

Know when to Walk Away

Well, I can talk about this now that I'm out and the auction is almost over. A seldom seen Ukrainian bank note popped up for auction recently ( A PICK # 50!), it was in a PMG holder and was in good condition. I felt this was a good time (for me) to place a fairly serious bid on the note, I placed a minimum bid on it last week Wednesday, I was outbid by Friday then waited and bid again yesterday. My last bid was over the auction estimate but was not strong enough as I didn't overtake the current

Quite a ride from (Allegan) to Singapore

This is a follow up to a previous Journal entry where I mentioned a story about "borrowed" specie, see Journal entry "But it was obsolete before I opened the box" for additional info on The Bank of Allegan and Michigan "wildcat" banks in general.  Here is an Obsolete banknote from another wildcat bank, The Bank Of Singapore (Michigan), organized Dec. 7, 1837, closed 1839. The settlement of Singapore was established in 1836 and subsequently abandoned by 1875 when the last saw mill was moved.

50 percent of it's 50 Cent, the other 50 (is in my registry set).

Well, I finally hit the 50% completion mark in my Ukraine Complete 1917-Date, P1-Date set and here's the note that did it the humble P#81a. Ahhh, always feels good to hit a milestone along the way in your collecting journey. I acquired my first Ukrainian banknote back in 2017, my first TPG note in 2018 (I can't even remember which ones they were now), started my registry set here in 2019 and hit 50% completion this week. It's been a great experience so far, I've learned more about bank

Why don't you read the book? (Here I'll show you)

When I first started collecting Ukrainian banknotes, three or four years ago, the first purchase I made was the Standard Catalog of World Paper Money (Modern). hereafter Krause. This book gave me the general information I was looking for, what did some of the notes look like, how many different notes are there, etc.. This basic info gave me an idea of #1 did I like the notes (are they interesting and attractive to me), #2 how much was this going to cost (how many different issues and how rare), 

Which path to take, which pawn to move?

So I'm really torn here. As some may know I've been selling off some of my duplicate coins to acquire funds to purchase a particular banknote (Pick 125, 2011 50 Hryven Commemorative), see Journal entry "Right now! Catch that magic moment, do it right here and now?". I've been wrestling with this since July, I've hit the total needed to get this note probably 3 times and each time something else came up, i.e. a coin or a run of banknotes, etc.. We'll here I am again, I hit the target amount to bu

But it was obsolete before I opened the box

In addition to foreign banknotes I also collect Obsolete and NBN's from the State of Michigan and I recently picked up this beauty. It's not in the best shape but the price was right and the $3 notes are always hard to find because of the "nonstandard" denomination (the $3's are the most popular because of this and harder to find). It's not a real attractive note in regards to the design, a simple geometric design wreathed in a stylized floral design was used for the left and right die

I'm the cream of the crop, I rise to the top!

Well after much foot dragging (and a little prodding), BAM!, I created a set for my Zimbabwe (new dollar) notes today. I must say the air is fresh and crisp up here at the top, (deep breath) ahhhhhh (thumbs firmly hooked onto suspenders *SNAP!*, hands on hips and looking stoically into the distance from atop the Registry.) . I recently purchased the final three notes I needed to complete the set, the $2 & $5 Bond Notes and the new 2020 $20 (say that three times fast). They arrived today, no

You're the best! Around! (70 EPQ)

I wasn't planning on a Journal entry today but what the heck, I saw something that just got the juices flowing, mostly jealousy. While wrapping up my morning browsing of eBay I enter my final search "Zimbabwe PMG". Sort, "Time Newly Listed", check. Scroll, scroll, scroll,wait what! Back, back, back, ooooooh! A PMG 2019, 70* EPQ Zimbabwe $2 banknote, sweet. I hadn't seen or noticed this note earlier in the week, as it looks like it was posted several days ago, with a little over a day left in the

You need more, more, more (Stuff)

"It was a dark and stormy night" Not really but it was pretty crappy out so I decided it was a good time to sort through the pile of cr*p (why does crappy show in the Journal but not cr*p, need to work on their censoring) on my desk. In doing so I realized it was a pile of supplemental material that I had saved, news articles, pictures, notes I made, etc. Towards the bottom of the pile was a group of "banknotes" (?), oh yeah, I remember these. It was a set of  commemorative "fantasy" banknotes t

"Choices always were a problem for you." (me).

I've been putting together a group of notes for submission to PMG over the last month/s and I thought it might be interesting to get a few opinions on a couple of notes I have multiples of. The first group I have whittled down to six, these are notes that I'm torn over, notes that for the most part I consider equal using my minimal grading abilities. I know a person can't tell the condition of a note based solely on an image, I'm just looking for opinions on the things you can maybe judge like m

That's (a)moire. (Close Enough, It's Two Different Languages For Pete's Sake)

Phonetics and countries aside, a moire /mwär/ is a pattern of irregular lines produced by the superposition at a slight angle (or offset spacing) of two sets of closely spaced lines. Moire patterns or moire grids are commonly used on banknotes as anti-scanning (counterfeiting) devices, how effective moires are in helping the layperson identify counterfeits or preventing counterfeiters from producing fake notes is topic for another day. At any rate, this all started with an effort to obtain bette

I feel I'm going to win (Oh S***! I'm going to win!)

Last night was a busy time for Ukrainian banknote auctions, there were eleven ending within roughly a hour of each other, from one seller. There were three lots I was focusing on in particular and the other 7 were lower on the wish list. I wasn't going to be online as the auctions were ending so I placed heavier then normal bids on the three I was really hoping to win and low ball bids on the rest of the lots. In addition to the Ukrainian notes there were also two Zimbabwe notes from the latest

I said you talk (type) too much. Homeboy you never SHUT UP!

I've been toying with some of the note descriptions for my Ukrainian registry sets and I'm having trouble staying under the 5,000 word limit. My friends and family would be somewhat surprised by this revelation, as they often have difficulty extracting a coherent sentence out of me at times. I tend to be more of an observer/listener rather than an active participant in conversations, pouncing in with wise cracking comments and/or definitive statements, after which (if my commentary had the desir

Right now! Catch that magic moment, do it right here and now?

Prior to me starting a Ukrainian banknote registry set, I was well aware of two "stopper" notes in it, Pick# 50 (2 Karbowanez) and Pick #125 (50 Hryvnia). The 2 Karbowanez note I may never own or even get the opportunity to (this note has an interesting story behind it, which I will write about in a future journal), but the 50 Hryvnia I will have an opportunity to acquire at some point and that time could be very soon. The 50 Hryvnia is a manufactured rarity (I hate that), a commemorative bankno

"long hair freaky people" Only!

**WARNING:READING THIS JOURNAL ENTRY MAY CAUSE SEVERE BRAIN PAIN, DO NOT READ THIS ENTRY IF YOU WANT TO LEARN ANYTHING WORTH RETAINING.** I was looking at my Ukrainian banknotes yesterday and after inspecting the reverse of the 1992 5 Hryven note I couldn't help but say to myself "Damn, that's one crazy stash! What's with all the hair on these notes?". Yep, that thought was all the encouragement my brain needed to leap from the structure of reality and plunge frontal lobe first into the "de

Sire I have stolen, stolen many times (Maybe?)

I was taking a scroll through the NBU's website this morning and stubbed my index finger on the headline "OFFICIAL DENIAL: The 1,000 Hryvnia Banknote Does Not Depict an Unlicensed Font", well now you have my attention! It appears that the NBU Had a minor controversy in regards to the font used on the new 1,000 UAH banknote released in October of last year. There were questions raised as to origin and use of the font on the reverse of the banknote, specifically the phrase "One Thousand hryvnia"  

Rise up GATHER round / .............. / Burn it up, let's go for BROKE!

Recently, I've been burning up some spare funds I acquired through sales of some duplicates in my coin collections. I've been busy using some of these newly rediscovered monies to focus on gathering up several Ukrainian banknotes for my sets. I have been hitting the banknotes really hard the last two weeks due to several factors eluded to in a previous journal entry (over $1,800 an ounce on 7/8/2020).  It just so happened that several notes popped up for sale that were either perfect matches for

Big (Dirty) Money Goes Around The World

I was reading through the National Bank of Ukraine's press releases and came across their response on "Preventing the spread of coronavirus infection COVID-19 during cash transactions" dated Mar, 18 2020, link here. https://bank.gov.ua/en/news/all/pro-profilaktiku-poshirennya-koronavirusnoyi-infektsiyi-covid-19-pid-chas-operatsiy-iz-gotivkoyu  On a side note, the NBU actually has a decent website with English translations and good info on all banknotes and coins produced by the Banknote Printing

Time To Focus On Banknotes & A New Direction?

With gold continuing its ascent towards $1,800 I had pumped the breaks on any new gold purchases about six months ago, and came to a dead stop in late March. Having just sent in, what will likely be my last submission of gold coins for awhile I was thinking I should take this opportunity to focus more on my banknote collection/collecting goals. Now appears to be an opportune time for me, with an influx of modern Ukrainian banknotes (my current focus) hitting the market at relatively low prices,